NHL Rumor Mill – October 11, 2019
The latest Bruins and Stars speculation in today’s NHL rumor mill.
LATEST ON THE BRUINS
NBC SPORTS BOSTON: In a recent mailbag segment, Joe Haggerty was asked if the Boston Bruins should package defenseman Urho Vaakanainen for a scoring winger. With Zdeno Chara aging, he believes they’ll need Vaakanainen on the left side of their blue line. The young blueliner could be scratching the surface of his ability.
Haggerty mused over the possibility of the Bruins evaluating Vaakanainen, Charlie McAvoy, and Matt Grzelcyk during this season in consideration of perhaps shopping Torey Krug for a scorer before the trade deadline. The blueliner is slated to become an unrestricted free agent next summer. Haggerty also speculates the Bruins could find a way to move on from winger Danton Heinen if another young player outperforms him.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bruins general manager Don Sweeney isn’t in any rush to make a big move for a winger. He will take his time evaluating his roster before going that route if necessary before the trade deadline. It could cost them a promising young player to address their secondary scoring but they could get a more affordable option closer to the trade deadline.
Contract extension talks are reportedly underway with Kruf. Should the rearguard remain unsigned by the trade deadline, I think Sweeney hangs onto him for the playoffs as an “own rental”.
SHOULD THE STARS CONSIDER AN EARLY TRADE?
NHL.COM: In a recent mailbag segment, Mike Heikawas asked if the Dallas Stars need to consider an early trade to address their early-season struggles. He feels they just need more time to see where they’re at. “Unless something disastrous happens, my guess is they wouldn’t even consider a move until after Halloween'” he said.
Asked if they could use their long-term injury reserve space to add a Brian Boyle-type player, Heika replied they might be best served by adding a bigger contract later in the season. He cited as an example their addition of Mats Zuccarello before last season’s trade deadline.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Stars are 1-3-1 in their opening five games of this season. Their sputtering start is troubling but they have plenty of time to turn things around. I don’t see them making any significant moves right now.
We know they’re trying to trade defenseman Julius Honka. On his own, however, he’ll only attract at best a middle-round draft pick. Perhaps they can package him with another player if they need to make a bigger move after Halloween. They have until Dec. 1 to sign Honka or trade him to a club that signs him. Otherwise, he’ll be ineligible to play in the NHL for the rest of this season.